#Ukraine Temporary protection card extended until 2025

Bedbugs in Hungarian prisons

Prisoners are just as vulnerable to insect bites as others living in closed institutions.

Translation is available for this content

Váltás magyarra

All prisoners have the right to human dignity. The Hungarian Helsinki Committee’s attorneys turned to the European Court of Human Rights a while ago, hoping the state would change the medieval and degrading prison conditions unsuitable for reintegration. Bedbug-free accommodation was already part of the complaint. In the 2015 judgment on the inhumane and overcrowded prison conditions, the Court condemned Hungary for violating the right to be placed in humane detention conditions. However, since then, the Hungarian state has not implemented the parts of the judgment concerning the “other conditions” of detention (including the bed bug issue). This is outrageous. Since Hungarian state actors are unwilling to engage in dialogue or cooperation, we continue to bring the bed bug problem to the attention of relevant international agencies. For example, we wrote to the Committee of Ministers that follows the implementation of the Strasbourg judgement (page 8) last year and to the Council of Europe Anti-Torture Committee (CPT) (page 13) this year. We hope that they can help us solve the problems.

The Hungarian Helsinki Committee and others are still fighting to ensure humane conditions throughout the entire penitentiary system. We continue to work, hoping that together, we will achieve results. We keep monitoring the bed bug infestation and will publish it on this map.


Bed bugs in Hungarian prisons - 🟦Not reported 🟥Reported

If your loved one is in an institution teeming with bed bugs, contact us via email (helsinki@helsinki.hu) so that we can mark it on the map.

We encourage those concerned to stand up for themselves, their loved ones, and each other.

File a complaint to

  • the prison commander, 
  • the prison prosecutor, 
  • the Commissioner for Fundamental Fights (ombudsman),
  • the public health department of the district office.

Without reports and action, change cannot be achieved.

We admire those who dare to stand up for themselves or their loved ones in such a closed system that is not open to dialogue, where, unfortunately, fear of retaliation is not unfounded. This country needs more people like them!

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Hungarian Helsinki Committee